The Unity of the Church
(1) Therefore, as a prisoner for the Lord in Rome, I exhort you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received from God. (2) Live a life of complete humility and gentleness; be patient, bearing with one another in love. (3) Make every effort to maintain (protect) the unity of the Holy Spirit through the relational bond of peace, which holds us together. (4) There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when God called you. (5) There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, (6) one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all!
The Diversity in the Church
(7) But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ distributed it, (8) as it is written in Psalm 68:18, “When he went up (ascended) on high, he led a host of captives, and he gave gifts to his people.” (9) By saying, “He went up (ascended),” it means that he first went down (descended) into the depths (lower regions) of the earth. (10) He who descended is the same one who also ascended far above all the heavens, so that he could fill the whole universe. (11) So Christ gave apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers (12) to prepare (equip) his people for the works of ministry (service), so that the body of Christ may be built up (edified) (13) until we all reach unity (wholeness) in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, experiencing the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.
(14) Then we will no longer behave like babies, being thrown back and forth by the waves, or blown about by every wind of false teaching and by the deceptive tricks and schemes of deceitful people. (15) Instead, by speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every way the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. (16) From Christ the whole body—united and held together by every supporting ligament—grows and builds itself up in love, as each member of the body faithfully does their work of ministry.
Stop Living Like Non-Jews
(17) So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must stop living like the pagans do, in the futility of their thinking. (18) They are darkened in their minds and have been separated from the life of God, because their hardness of heart has made them ignorant. (19) Having lost all shame, they have given themselves over to every kind of sensual pleasure so as to practice every kind of impurity. They are full of greed!
(20) However, my brothers and sisters, this is not the way of life that you learned (21) when you heard about Christ and were taught in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus.
Live the Life of Jesus Christ
(22) You were taught to put off your old self, in which you once lived, which is being corrupted through its deceptive passions, (23) and instead to be renewed in the spirit (attitude) of your minds, (24) and to put on the new self that has been created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
(25) Therefore each of you must put off all lies and speak truthfully to your neighbor, because we are all members of the same human family (of one another). (26) In your anger do not sin by remaining angry the whole day, (27) and do not give the devil an opportunity (a foothold) to negatively influence your life. (28) Thieves must stop stealing and should do useful work with their hands, so that they will have money to share with those in need.
(29) Do not let any destructive words come out of your mouths, but speak only words that are helpful for building up (edifying) others according to their needs, so that your words will give grace to those who hear them. (30) And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God by the way you live, because he is the one who is your seal of security for the day of redemption. (31) Cleanse yourself from all resentment (bitterness), anger and inner rage, emotional outcries, fighting, slander, and all hateful feelings. (32) Instead, be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another just as in Christ God forgave you.